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Final arguments in medipot trial

November 30, 2009 - 1:29 pm

Attorneys in the Jovan Jackson case put their last, best arguments to the jury this morning, which should mark the end of the week long criminal trial of the proprietor of the 1,600-member Answerdam Rx medical marijuana collective.

Judge Cynthia Bashant’s Department 33 courtroom was about three-quarters full of medical cannabis proponents, from Jackson’s family to SoCal NORML director Craig Beresh. The proeecution and defense each called a final witness (the Kearny Mesa  property manager and a colon-cancer patient, respectively) before launching into closing arguments.

Deputy District Attorney Chris Lindberg’s address boiled down to a single line: “It’s not about helping people, it’s about helping himself.” Lindberg illustrated his point with a door-sized enlargement of a $100,000 cashier’s check made out to Jackson, though, as the defense later pointed out, there was no indication on the check that it was related to Answerdam’s operations.

Lindberg further suggested that Answerdam couldn’t possibly be a non-profit collective because a) it closed down temporarily for renovation and only a for-profit business would ever renovate and b)it was developing a website and only a for-profit business would ever need one.

His big clincher was that because not every member was involved in cultivating marijuana, it wasn’t, by definition, a collective or cooperative.

Jackson’s attorney, K. Lance Rogers, countered with the example of an organic grocery coop, in which members aren’t expected to be involved directly with growing crops. Instead, as is the case with Answerdam, members support access to organic foods through donations and purchases.

Rogers’ catchphrase was, “marijuana is medicine,” and argued that law enforcement could not articulate how exactly Jackson had broken the law since the undercover officers had little or no training in legal medical cannabis cultivation.

The court adjourned for lunch and Lindberg is scheduled to deliver his rebuttal this afternoon, after which the jury will go into deliberation.

We’ll have more information as it comes in.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. mr. mike permalink
    November 30, 2009 - 9:09 pm 9:09 pm

    So by the prosecutions’ logic, if I ran a co-op bakery I would never have to repaint the walls every ten years or replace any defective machinery or put out rat and roach traps. Good thing they aren’t health inspectors.

  2. Anonymous permalink
    December 1, 2009 - 8:08 am 8:08 am

    THese co-ops are the biggest scams around.
    Bunch of ef’n potheads trying to pretend that they’re legit.

    I hope he gets 20 years.

  3. December 1, 2009 - 8:41 am 8:41 am

    Mr Mike: That’s what I thought.
    Anonymous: Well, a deputy district attorney thought Answerdam was legit enough to sign up for a membership for his own condition.

  4. mofle619 permalink
    December 1, 2009 - 2:24 pm 2:24 pm

    just got to say a few things here. ok, let me make sure i understood this right. so a non-profit business are supposed to run poor to the point where they cant afford to renovate their building. a non-profit business is not allowed to make websites? im sorry, i missed those guidlines for non-profit businesses. to make a comparison here, the san diego zoo is a non-profit organization. now this company isnt generating anywhere near the revenue that the san diego zoo is, but the sd zoo is still considered a non-profit organization? this is rediculous. the deputy attorney needs to look up the guidelines for non-profit organizations. goodwill, salvation army, and YMCA are all non profit organizations. yet, they are all allowed to run their business according to the guidlines, as long as they dont distribute their surplus of capital to the owners or board members, or shareholders. they are supposed to use their surplus of capital to further its goals. renovatiing the building, and building a website are all goals that this non-profit organization set, and they are using their surplus of capital to pay for all of this. as far as the 100,000 check goes, just because the owner owns this co-op, doesnt mean that he cant have any other businesses or ventures. there is nothing in the law that limits the owners of the non-profit organizations to only owning that business and nothing more. The deputy attorneys arguments are rediculous and sound very childish. DONE.

  5. December 1, 2009 - 2:43 pm 2:43 pm

    FYI: Jackson was found not guilty on all counts.

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